Oh is it #timetotalk? But that's already all I do.
"Conversations change lives." - at least that's what the promotional poster says.
You know what's changing my life for the worst at the moment?
Conversations with mental health professionals. - and that's what I'm about to focus on, so if you're a lovely friend or acquaintance who has reached out to me? Go you, I love you and you matter and you helped.
As many others have pointed out (and, frankly, I do not have the headspace to read all the great things folks have already pointed out, so I know I will be echoing a lot that's already being said), the problem really isn't about us talking.
It's all so easy to say "just reach out". But when you reach out and nothing happens, it's hard to keep going. I'm not going to give details of all the times I reached out and it led nowhere. It feels highly ironic that I am at a time in my life when I have reached out, and talked, the most. Yet I am in the worst place I have ever been. Because the professionals I am under the care of do not listen. Because when you say you want to die and a professional's reaction is to call a friend of yours and ask about your "self-reported suicidal thoughts" in an accusatory way (because what could suicidal thoughts be but self-reported?), it's hard to feel supported. Because when you have a disability on top of your mental illnesses and they refuse to accommodate your disability, it's hard to feel supported.
Buying Hamilton tickets when you are disabled, but not a wheelchair user
As all Hamilton fans, I was very excited on Monday to be attempting to get tickets for a show, as I had signed up for the presale back in October. In this post, I would like to both discuss what the process of purchasing tickets was like as a disabled person who is entitled to a carer ticket but is not a wheelchair user, so that it may help other people (click here to skip to the end of my explanations to know how to actually order a ticket) but also make potentially useful suggestions to improve this process, which was, in six words: a bit pants and quite hard.
*Note about my situation: I have an Access Card. In order to get the card, I had to send proof of my disability, and particular needs were identified via this evidence - including the need for a carer ticket. The card is not compulsory to get adjustments from venues, but it makes things easier when a particular venue accepts it, as they can take your card number and see that you are indeed entitled to what you are asking for.*
Why A Blog?
Blogging and me (my experience tells me I am supposed to use subheadings)
I have been reading blogs for over ten years. In fact, I have had a blog in the past. Several blogs. I will save you the legwork: I have made sure these have disappeared off the surface on the internet (I know, I know, nothing ever really disappears from the internet but one can try and I would certainly worry over someone's obsession about me if they were to find one of these).
Blogging and University
It seems blogging has become almost essential in academia. Of course, it isn't compulsory, but some sort of online presence is practically a given, as evidenced by the numerous workshops held by my university's doctoral college about social media and how to make the most of it. This topic also regularly comes up in discussions I have had with people over the past three months since I have started my PhD. People's opinions vary but I have yet to hear anyone refuse to acknowledge the fact that social media is becoming more and more important in the context of University.